By; AYO OJEDOKUN, Lagos
All is set for Nigeria and Japan to clash in a senior women international friendly match in Kobe on Thursday.
The delegation of Super Falcons, which left Nigeria on Friday, has arrived in the Japanese town of Kobe, where they take on 2011 world champions, Japan at the Noevir Stadium, Kobe on Thursday, 6th October. The date falls within one of the FIFA Women International Windows for this year.
Nadeshiko Japan, which is the alias of the Women National Team of Japan, are rated 13th in the world. Both teams have clashed only once at competitive level – at the 2004 Olympic Women’s Football Tournament. Nadeshiko pipped the Falcons 1-0 at the Karaiskakis Stadium in Piraeus on 14th August 2004.
Two back-to-back friendlies in 2013 were won 2-0 each by Nadeshiko.
Japan’s entertaining girls won the FIFA World Cup in Germany in 2011, beating Team USA in a pulsating penalty shoot-out after regulation time ended 2-2. Nadeshiko thus became the first team from Asia to win a senior FIFA World Cup trophy.
The Super Falcons have participated in every FIFA Women’s World Cup finals since the competition began in 1991, reaching the quarter finals in 1999. They are one of the 32 teams that will take part in the biggest-ever FIFA Women’s World Cup finals set for nine cities in Australia and New Zealand 20th July – 20th August 2023.